Coming off the slalom course, Niko was in the lead and it was not looking good for the "uphillers" because Niko grew up in Rovaniemi, Finland, which is known for its cross-country skiing. In fact, many of the leaders going into the XC portion were looking pretty formidable. Borg has come out and skied intervals with the XC team in the past. Ida, the women's leader, is from north of the Arctic Circle, where nordic skiing is a way of life. It was clear that the Nordic skiers would have an "uphill battle" if they were going to catch the chairlift riders.
Ida & Anna:
Eventually, (almost) all the chairlift-riders were on course and the cross-country skiers (and coaches) could only watch helplessly as they skied out of sight:
But finally, the chase was on:
By the end of the first lap, Lasse had managed to catch Borg and moved into the lead for good:
Just one more lap to go, Brew...
Anna and Lutz:
Davis & Ida:
Check out this classic Sean series, as he gets the better of the Nordic coach:
Andreas fended off Nevio:
And Brew held off Lutz:
Finish line carnage:
Karina managed to catch Ida for the women's title:
Laura, Anais and Anna:
In the end, it was Lasse and Karina who prevailed in 2012. Next year, who knows what the alpine-to-nordic time penalty will be...?